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Democracy Spring: Thousands Descend on US Capitol, Over 400 Arrested

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Over 400 activists were arrested outside the US Capitol.
Over 400 activists were arrested outside the US Capitol.
(Image by (photo: Paulina Leonovich/Twitter))
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Thousands of Americans have descended on Washington to launch one week of civil disobedience under the banner Democracy Spring. Over 400 people were arrested today, and over 3,000 have pledged to risk arrest over the next week. Their main demand is to get money out of politics.

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Before the marchers made their way to the Capitol, Cenk Uygur of the Young Turks thanked the 200 people who walked 140 miles over 10 days from Philadelphia. Uygur pointed out that the mainstream media has ignored Democracy Spring and explained that the reason is that they are part of the establishment. Uygur said that the media don't want money out of politics, they depend on that money when it is used to buy campaign ads. Uygur declared that while this is just the beginning, they are no longer coming for us, but we are coming for them.



Kai Newkirk, a lead organizer of the event, told the crowd that if "we don't have a democracy that represents all of us, we are in danger of losing what makes America great." Newkirk went on to say, "We are here to send a message that there will be a political price to pay for siding with the moneyed interests over the people." The organization's website says: "This week we began the process of taking back our democracy, with hundreds arrested in our first mass sit-in at the Capitol on Monday, April 11. Now day after day through Saturday, April 16th, we will continue to reclaim the Capitol in a show of hope and for the truly representative democracy we see in our hearts. Over 3,500 people, coming to DC from near and far, have pledged to risk arrest this week."

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Thousands marched from Columbus Circle to the east side of the Capitol, where hundreds of people, including Cenk Uygur and Kai Newkirk, made their way to the Capitol steps. They sat down and received warnings from the Capital Police to move away from the steps or be arrested. Many heeded the warning and moved away from the building. Hundreds, in what is being billed as the largest civil disobedience action ever at the Capitol Building, remained and were arrested one by one over five hours.

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